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Paedophile Raids

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5:30am 15th June 2012
(Updated 5:30am 15th June 2012)

Pirate FM has learnt a crackdown on internet paedophiles has led to two arrests in Cornwall and Devon.

Another person was interviewed in the southwest as part of a national operation. Nationwide, 76 are being questioned, including a retired teacher and a scout leader.

Detectives say a number of children in the southwest have been safeguarded but they are urging parents to talk to their children about online stranger danger.

DI Simon Snell leads the Devon and Cornwall Police Child Exploitation Unit. He said homes are being searched for indecent images: "What people don't realise is that virtually every image that we now look at is actually a video clip, so some of the horrific abuse that children have been through are actually recorded on the images that we have probably seized, either today or in the future.

"It's not a stamp collection. It is actually an indecent image of a child where somebody has been abusing a child. Every single one of those images is a crime scene for us."

Devon and Cornwall Police have issued this statement: "In support of Operation Tharsley, Devon and Cornwall Police has worked alongside CEOP and SOCA. As part of this operation police officers executed three, unrelated, warrants across Devon and Cornwall. This resulted in two people being arrested and a third was interviewed as a voluntary attender. A quantity of computer equipment was seized for analysis and a number of children were safeguarded through these actions."

Three Things to Tell your Children

Experts say there are some simple messages to make sure your children stay safe online:

  • Explain that personal information (name, address, phone number, school, arrnagements for meeting with friends etc.) should never be given out online to anyone the child doesn't know offline.
  • Explain that once a picture has been posted online it can be copied and shared with other people if you delete it. That means being careful about the sort of photographs and information that gets put up.
  • Explain that some people lie online and that it is never too late to tell someone if something happens that makes them feel uncomfortable.

For more information check out the CEOP website here.

5:30am 15th June 2012

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